Sandi Toksvig will be a tough act to follow as the host of Radio 4’s News Quiz. She had nine years, 28 series and around 220 episodes under her belt when she presented her final instalment of the topical comedy panel show last week (before heading off to start her own political party) . And she was as well-loved by listeners as that record suggests.
At least her replacement Miles Jupp knows the ropes, having made the first of many appearances as a panellist in 2009. He’s also a familiar voice to Radio 4 listeners, having written and starred in In And Out Of The Kitchen as the cookery writer Damien Trench, and hosted another panel show, It’s Not What You Know.
Jupp has the comedy chops to pull it off, too – he’s a stand-up comedian and will be best known to fans of BBC2’s ecclesiastical sitcom Rev as Adam Smallbone’s hapless sidekick Nigel (not to mention to those of a certain age as Archie the inventor in CBeebies show Balamory).
Toksvig agrees. “I couldn’t be more delighted that Miles Jupp is taking over as host of The News Quiz,” she said. “He is perfect – affable, funny and charming. I look forward to going from host to fan.”
Jupp said it was “a massive honour” to follow in the footsteps of former presenters who also included Barry Norman, Barry Took and Simon Hoggart but said he was aware of the scale of the task ahead of him.
“Sandi has been remarkable in her time in charge of The News Quiz and her legacy will live on forever amongst listeners,” said Jupp.
“Following her departure my first job will be to lead the regulars and listeners through as many of the stages of grief as are ultimately deemed necessary (by a completely independent arbiter). Then it will simply be a matter of dumbing it down and sexing it up. Or vice versa, depending entirely on the circumstances.”
The News Quiz was first broadcast in 1977 and is now in its 87th series. Jupp will begin his stint in charge with the show broadcast on Friday 17th September 2015.